The Catholic Parish of
Saint John Henry Newman

 Covering most of East Leeds

The Foolish Man.

Read 1034 Times
One of life’s greatest challenges is thinking and doing the things that ultimately matter and bring success. A life, in which anything goes, is a life in which nothing really goes. Wisdom is the important thing, as it means having the discipline to prioritise and have the ability to work towards a stated goal. God rewards wisdom, not wasted effort.

There is a story told that many years ago a lighthouse keeper was in charge of a land based lighthouse on a rocky stretch of coastline, who received a new supply of oil each month to keep the light burning. Being close to the shore, he found he had lots of visitors from the nearby village, particularly when they ran short of oil. One day a woman from the village came and begged him for some oil to keep her family warm. Word soon got round the village and a local farmer requested some oil to keep his tractor going, even the local priest turned up and asked for some oil to light up the church. So the requests went on and on during the rest of the month and the keeper who was a kindly soul tried to please everyone as all the requests seemed quite legitimate from people in need.

Then he was faced with a major problem, his supply of oil ran out before the end of the month when new supplies were due to be delivered, as a result the lighthouse beacon went out. As a direct result of no warning beacon being displayed, several ships ran aground and many lives lost in the raging seas around the coast. The authorities immediately launched an investigation and the lighthouse keeper was suspended and accused of negligence and failure to perform the duties he was authorised to do. When he appeared before the investigation panel the man was very repentant and explained he had only tried to help the villagers over the cold winter months. But despite of all his excuses and pleading, the investigating panel concluded that he was guilty of gross negligence, “You were given oil for one purpose and one purpose only, that of keeping this light burning, you should have learned to be wise and to prioritise your actions and then lots of these lives would have been saved.

“Only you will really know all the circumstances that surround your decisions.
You’re allowed to make mistakes, we all do, but it’s when it affects others that we need to
revaluate our decision making.”

Published Fri 8th Jul 2016 20:31:56
Last Modified on Fri 8th Jul 2016 20:31:56

Share This Page